U.S. Cellular partners with Rivada on public safety broadband proposal
State has yet to decide which contractor option to pursue
U.S. Cellular announced it will assist Virginia-based communications company Rivada Networks with developing an alternative radio access network plan in New Hampshire, should the state opt out of FirstNet, the federally funded interoperable public safety mobile telecommunications network currently in development.
In September 2016, the Executive Council approved to sign a no-cost, no-obligation contract with the Rivada to develop an alternative radio access network plan for the state’s first responders. Rivada delivered a draft of that plan in March 2017.
But the selection of Rivada should not be seen as a move by New Hampshire to opt out of FirstNet, John Stevens, the statewide interoperability coordinator for the NH Department of Safety, told Urgent Communications, the International Wireless Communications Expo’s website.
At the time, John Stevens, the statewide interoperability coordinator for the NH Department of Safety, said there was no intention to make a decision regarding opting in or out. “There is no obligation at this point in time to do anything other than work with FirstNet, develop the state plan with FirstNet and work with the contractor to see if, in fact, we can build our own [radio access network],” Stevens told Urgent Communications, the International Wireless Communications Expo’s website. “Then we’ll let the governor and [executive] council to make a decision as to what works best for New Hampshire.”
Under its agreement with Rivada, U.S. Cellular will provide its more than 30 years of experience in managing and constructing wireless networks to assist Rivada in the deployment of a state-of-the-art network for New Hampshire’s first responders.
Excess capacity on that network will be offered for commercial use to support wireless users throughout the state of New Hampshire, including U.S. Cellular customers.
“This effort will ensure the best of both worlds, a first class network public responders can rely on and a commercial network to help augment the insatiable demand for data by New Hampshire consumers,” said Kenneth R. Meyers, president and CEO of U.S. Cellular. “There’s no reason for New Hampshire’s citizens and first responders to accept anything less than the best, which is what Rivada with the assistance of U.S. Cellular will provide.”
“Adding U.S. Cellular to our New Hampshire team strengthens an already compelling offer to the state. We’re delighted to be able to work side by side with a great U.S. Cellular team in the Granite State,” said Joe Euteneuer, co-CEO of Rivada Networks.